The 2022–23 Ranji Trophy season has not gotten off to the best of starts for Delhi. After losing to Maharashtra to start, they subsequently tied with Assam after giving up the lead after the first inning. Ishant Sharma, Navdeep Saini, and Simarjeet Singh were all unavailable before their first home match of the season against Tamil Nadu, and veteran batter Nitish Rana was completely benched. This caused more difficulties for the team.

The fight’s first day at Ferozeshah Kotla Stadium also didn’t go as planned. After being sent in to bat, Delhi reached 212/6 in 76 overs when poor lighting forced an early halt to the day’s play. L Vignesh and Sandeep Warrier, both seamers for Tamil Nadu, each claimed three victims.

The extreme cold in the national capital was a difficulty in itself for the Tamil Nadu players who are used to mild weather back home. For example, Vignesh and India all-arounder Washington Sundar used woolen hats even while bowling. Later, according to Warrier, Vignesh had an ear infection as a result of the cold after landing in Delhi.

The primary contribution for the hosts was opener Dhruv Shorey, who built on his stellar start to the season by scoring a patient 66 off 168 balls. The 30-year-old scored an undefeated 252 in the first innings of Delhi’s last match against Assam and then added 150* in the second.

Vignesh struck twice in the third over in the inning, leaving Shorey to finish the work. Anuj Rawat (3-5b) lost out because of his hesitant footwork as he edged a full ball to Vijay Shankar at the gully. The sixth ball that Delhi captain Yash Dhull faced resulted in his dismissal for a duck, even though he didn’t seem to think he had a nick.

Throughout the day, Vignesh continued to bowl a probing line and length. However, Delhi will be frustrated that they couldn’t perform better on a field where the ball didn’t do much. The TN bowlers also successfully used the short-ball strategy after lunch. With short deliveries, Warrier dismissed Vaibhav Rawal (11) and Jonty Sidhu (57-107b).

Mulani performs well for Mumbai

On Day 1 of their match in Mumbai, Mumbai’s left-arm spinner Shams Mulani recorded 4/109 as Saurashtra was outnumbered 289 to none. Captain of Saurashtra Arpit Vasavada led all scorers with 75. Following the early dismissals of openers Prithvi Shaw and Yashasvi Jaiswal, Mumbai was 36/2 at the time of stumps.

Brief results (selected games):

Within New Delhi: Tamil Nadu defeated Delhi 212/6 (D Shorey 66, J Sidhu 57; L Vignesh 3/42, S Warrier 3/59); Saurashtra 289 (A Vasavada 75; S Mulani 4/109) triumphed in Mumbai. Mumbai 36/2 (S Yadav 18 at bat); Himachal Pradesh 49 (D Dhapola 8/35) at Dehradun. Karnataka 294/3 (R Samarth 140) vs. Goa; Uttarakhand 295/6 (A Tare 91*); Porvorim.